A member of the Public Service Commission says hedging agreements on natural gas prices have added nearly $245 million to the bills of Alabama Gas Corp. customers since the state's largest natural gas distributor started the practice in 2003.
PSC member Terry Dunn said Alabama Gas is one of many utilities that used the risk-management strategy and saw it "go very badly in recent years." He said it points to the need for the PSC to re-examine its rules on hedging agreements.
Some members of the Alabama Legislature have been trying for more than 10 years to rewrite the Alabama Constitution by doing it one article at a time.
Two of the rewritten articles are finally ready to go before voters. Proposed amendments rewriting two sections on the 1901 Constitution relating to banking and corporations passed the Alabama House and Senate earlier this year and will be on the Nov. 6 ballot.
It's a similar process that was used in the early 1970s to rewrite the state's judicial articles.
Gov. Robert Bentley says he won't implement part of the federal Affordable Health Care Act in Alabama.
Bentley's aides announced Monday that he sent a letter to Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebelius saying he's an opponent of the act. Bentley said he will not make a decision on establishing minimum benefits for those buying individual and small group policies in Alabama. He called it irresponsible to decide what Alabama's benchmark will be for essential health benefits without clear guidance from the federal government.
A new law has taken effect that's aimed at making it tougher for people to get a key ingredient needed to produce the illegal drug methamphetamine.
At the same time, the new law insures that allergy sufferers will still have access to the same substance, pseudoephedrine, which can mean the difference between clogged sinuses and being able to breathe.
The new law stops a process called "smurfing" where manufacturers of meth ask various people to buy pseudoephedrine in small amounts from different locations.
Alabama's Republican Party chairman is traveling across the state to announce that the party will send volunteers to battleground states because Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is expected to carry Alabama by a wide margin.
Party Chairman Bill Armistead is calling the effort Alabama Battleground Patriots.
A party spokeswoman says Armistead plans stops Monday in Huntsville, Montgomery, Mobile and Dothan. He will be in Hoover on Tuesday.
The Republican nominee for president has carried Alabama in every election since 1980.
A new federal judge will soon take the bench in Alabama.
New Orleans native Madeline Haikala will start her new job Monday as a U.S. magistrate judge hearing cases in a district composed of 31 counties in the northern part of Alabama. The Birmingham News reports (http://bit.ly/QpmFyA ) that Haikala is the first new magistrate judge in 14 years.
Magistrate judges hear federal misdemeanor cases and conduct pre-trial proceedings.
A new superintendent could be picked for Jefferson County next week.
The county's Board of Education plans to meet Monday morning to discuss which person it should select among the five candidates who were recently interviewed.
The Birmingham News (http://bit.ly/QpsFrj ) reports that the board received a total of 24 applicants from 15 states. Officials have aimed to have the new superintendent in place by Jan. 2. The current superintendent, Phil Hammonds, will retire early next year.
The district attorney prosecuting cases in Monroe and Conecuh counties will soon retire.
Tommy Chapman will step down Monday from his post as district attorney for the 35th Judicial Circuit. Gov. Robert Bentley has appointed Chapman's chief assistant, Steve Wadlington, to fill the remainder of Chapman's term.
Gov. Guy Hunt first appointed Chapman as the local district attorney in 1990. He was re-elected four times.
State officials are criticizing a plan that would limit lock usage on the Alabama and Chattahoochee rivers.
Citing budget cuts and low river traffic, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said starting Oct. 7 it will allow commercial boats to transit the locks if boat operators make an appointment 72 hours in advance. The locks allow boats to bypass dams that obstruct river travel.
Recreational boats can use the locks only if the locks are being used for another purpose.